Global coal consumption decreased by 3.1% in 2020.

The US experienced the largest year-on-year change, -72 Mtce, followed by the EU and India, -45 and -30 Mtce respectively. China and Indonesia increased their consumption of coal, though not by enough to offset the decrease in Europe and America.

World coal consumption, 1978-2020


China is the largest consumer of coal, and has comprised more than half of global consumption since 2011, with this share growing year upon year; reaching 56% in 2020.

Over the past decade, China has almost always accounted for the lion’s share of the global growth in coal demand, though from 2017 to 2019 its gains were offset by declines in the United States and the European Union.

While coal consumption in the United States and the European Union fell to record lows in 2020, they remain respectively the 3rd and 4th largest consumers.

Coal consumption year-on-year growth rate, 2010-2020